Growing up in a family of makers Dara was raised with paints, pastels, clay, yarn, thread, and fabric in her hands. The women in her life made things for the home. This desire to make utilitarian objects wove into her youth and has stayed with her over the years. Clay was the medium that spoke to her. She fell in love with the intimate nature of utilitarian ceramics and how these pieces are a part of our everyday experience, from plates arranged on a table to how a cup touches your lips.
Dara received a BFA from Virginia Tech and an MFA from Montana State University. In 2005, she was an Artist in Residence at the Archie Bray Foundation in Helena, Montana. After graduate school she moved to Washington and taught at Clark College in Vancouver, WA and Oregon College of Art and Craft in Portland, OR. Most recently, Dara’s life has taken her to Salt Lake City, UT where she worked for 3 years as a product designer and is now a full-time studio artist.
Dara’s designs are an exploration of form and surface. Her work is first made by sculpting a model of each design then casting it in plaster. Next, the molds are cast with porcelain slip. Once removed from the mold each piece is hand carved with a pattern. These pieces are finished with luscious glazes over the subtle textures that add a tactile experience to the work.